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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Oct > Oct 30

Close Encounters Of The Turkish Kind

From: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
Date: Tue, 30 Oct 2007 12:56:39 -0400
Archived: Tue, 30 Oct 2007 12:56:39 -0400
Subject: Close Encounters Of The Turkish Kind

Source: Asia Times Online - Kowloon, Hong Kong


Oct 31, 2007

Close Encounters Of The Turkish Kind
By Fazile Zahir

FETHIYE, Turkey - The alleged sighting of an unidentified flying
object (UFO) has excited the Turkish media with pictures
appearing in both sensationalistic tabloids and more serious
broadsheet papers last week.

The UFO was spotted in the Karakopru area of Sanliurfa province
towards 4am on Wednesday. Filmed by an amateur videographer, the
strangely glowing hexagonal ball of light hovered in the sky
emitting red, green and white lights and moved both fast and
erratically. After 15 minutes it disappeared without a trace.

As of yet no official explanation has been offered as to what it
might be, although Internet comments vary between lauding a
genuine sighting of a "green fireball" phenomenon and skeptics
who claim the object is just a star filmed under magnification
or others who believe that it was an American spy plane
monitoring Turkey's border with Syria.

It was Turkey's third major sighting in 2007. One was in Konya
in March (a series of sightings that lasted off and on for a
week) and another in Istanbul on January 4 when people saw a
spinning circle with glowing white lights in the sky. And the
head of the Turkish Sirius UFO Space Sciences Research Center
Haktan Akdogan claimed in August that in the past few months the
number of sightings in Turkey has been increasing.

The largest concentration of sightings and perhaps the best
documented occurred between 2001 and 2002. This spate seem to
have been triggered by an extraordinary report on June 7, 2001
when 10 rural guardsmen from the village of Dondurmaz in
Adiyaman province claimed to have seen a bright light in the
shape of a large circular "tray" the size of a house glowing in
the sky. They watched as it flew off in the direction of Ulubai
mountain and then winked out of sight.

When the men reported to their commander their statements were
taken seriously and the governor of Adiyaman province, Halil
Iaik, had them separated and individually questioned. Not only
did their accounts tally up but when asked to draw pictures of
what they had seen all the sketches were uncannily similar. Iaik
felt the event was serious enough to send a report with the
details to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and also informed
Haktan Akdogan at the Sirius organization.

By June 13 in the same year, Sabah newspaper was leading with
the headline "Everyone searching for UFOs" in a story that
detailed how in Usak locals had stoned an alien, in Gaziantep
the police had videoed a UFO and that people all over the
country were phoning in reports of strange occurrences to their
local jandarma (constabulary).

The reports continued in a slightly hysterical atmosphere well
into 2002 and included an event in Gebze on May 31, 2002 where a
UFO was reported circling with projecting lights for over an
hour. This was followed by Aksam newspaper printing the story on
June 1, 2002 of Saffet Sap, an electronic technician from
Beykoz, who managed to video a flying object like a black bug
with seven or eight legs. Later in the year on November 9 the
Hurriyet newspaper ran the account of four commercial pilots
from different planes who had all seen UFOs in the same patch of
sky on the same day at the same time.

Haktan Akdogan of Sirius seems to be a recurring figure in
Turkish UFO lore commenting freely on each event and insisting
on the importance of Turkey to alien life. His motives however
may not just be scientific, he is also the owner of the Istanbul
UFO museum that opened in 2002 (commercially riding on the back
of these multiple UFO events) and any extra interest in aliens
will also encourage customers to his museum. He also runs the
museum as a fairly successful franchise with three others in
Turkey (Istanbul, Denizli and Goreme in Cappadocia) and his
website www.siriusufo.org advertises for further partners to
open other UFO museums.

It is his intention to open UFO museums all over Turkey to
"further the knowledge of the Turkish people and to attract
tourists". His organization provides all the necessary materials
and installations so each museum is a de facto copy of the
first. Whether they are lucrative or not is not mentioned but
when the Goreme museum opened in 2006 Hurriyet newspaper
reported that they had 5,000 visitors in one month alone.
Apparently it was especially popular with the Japanese.

Whether extraterrestrials exist or not is much debated but
recent advances in science make the chances seem more likely.
Animals known as extremophiles thrive in earth environments
previously thought not to have been able to sustain life. From
microbes found living without oxygen in volcanic fissures 3.2
kilometers down in ocean trenches to "water bears" (aka
tardigrades) that can survive temperatures from nearly 17-
degrees Celsius to 150.5-degrees Celsius and even live in a
vacuum like that found in space. These minute organisms have
upended the understanding of what is needed for life to survive
and flourish.

Previously scientists has worked on the assumption that both
oxygen and liquid water were key factors in sustaining life but
now it seems that these are only important to certain types of
life. The "rare earth" theory is falling out of favor to be
replaced with the idea that life is adaptable and that the
question that needs to be asked is, "What kind of environment
other than our own might sustain living things?"

The chances of intelligent life with the technology to
communicate is slimmer, though it is conceivable that it is
possible that such worlds have come and gone. If life of this
sort exists now they, like us would have the technology to
recognize that earth is an "interesting" planet and worth
investigating. So why aren't they here? Some would say they are
and the report of flying objects above Karakopru on Tuesday was
a clear indication of just that.


Fazile Zahir is of Turkish descent, born and brought up in
London. She moved to live in Turkey in 2005 and has been writing
full time since then.

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